As part of National Apprentice Week, the Dorchester Chamber of Commerce Education Committee teamed up with the new Dorchester County Public Schools Career Coaches to announce an information sharing session for all county employers.
The Youth Workforce Lunch and Learn session is set for Friday, Dec. 1, at noon. The objective of the event is to help local businesses learn how to tap into the capable workforce found right here in our high schools.
The session will cover multiple options for getting students engaged in the workforce while they are still attending high school.
The challenge with an adequate workforce is listed in the top three issues facing almost every business in the state of Maryland. Employers have a relatively untapped source of labor in schools, with the desire to learn and build job skills for their futures.
“We are very excited about the creation of the new Career Coach roles at DCPS,” said Joel Bunde, education committee chair. “They will be a tremendous resource for our students and a great asset for the business community as we work to solve the workforce challenges we face today.”
Over the past four years, the chamber has been working with DCPS and the State Department of Labor to help get the Youth Apprentice Program launched.
While the pandemic slowed progress, the program is now at a point where it can truly have a significant impact on the career development of our youth and a huge impact on the local workforce.
The addition of career coaches within DCPS is going to be a catalyst for the growth of the program. There are many success stories locally and across the state for the Youth Apprentice Program already.
The more students and businesses that get engaged in the program, the faster we will realize improvements in our local workforce. It will be one of the key topics at the Lunch and Learn.
There are other ways to engage students and help with their career development and improved employability and those will also be discussed during the session. Some examples include internships (paid and unpaid), job shadowing, summer/seasonal employment, and hiring a student while understanding and respecting the hours they are able to work while still in school.
The session will be held in the Chamber Conference Center and will have a webinar option for those that cannot make it to the in-person event.
Lunch will be provided for those who attend in-person. There is no charge for the event, but you must register for either the in-person or online option.
You can visit the chamber calendar to register online at dorchesterchamber.org, or call the chamber at 410-228-3575 to register. Questions can be directed to firstname.lastname@example.org.